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Jewish culture in Thuringia - Present

It was not until after 1990 that the Jewish population in Thuringia grew again and a lively community developed. Now festivals and creative workshops shape Jewish life in the towns and invite visitors to participate but also to address the life and culture, past and present, in Thuringia.

New Synagogue in Erfurt

Today the new synagogue in Erfurt represents the centre of a lively community in Thuringia and here the weekly Sabbath services, among other events, are held. They are also open to non-Jewish visitors. The Jewish State Community in Thuringia now has some 800 members, of whom 500 live in Erfurt. It was not until after 1990 that the Jewish community grew again as a result of migration. During the pogrom night of 9 to 10 November 1938, SA troops plundered and laid waste what was then the Large Synagogue in Erfurt and set it on fire. In 1939, it was purchased by the city council for 15,000 reichsmarks and a wooden shed for storage of coke was built on the site in 1940. In accordance with a council order dated 20 March 1947, the property was ultimately returned to the Jewish community, who built the new synagogue here in 1951/52. It remained the only new synagogue built in the GDR. However, many Jews left the country during the 1950s.

ACHAVA Festspiele Thüringen

ACHAVA lädt ein zu interreligiösen und interkulturellen Dialogen, die sich von der Gedankenwelt jüdischer Prophetie, wie sie in den Schriften des Alten Testaments überliefert ist, inspirieren lassen. "Achava" heißt auf hebräisch Brüderlichkeit - und der Name ist Programm bei dem Erfurter Festival. Dazu gibt es viele hochkarätige Konzerte und spannende Gesprächsrunden zu zeitgenössischen Themen.

Zeitraum: September


Thuringian Festival of Jewish-Israeli Culture

In Erfurt and many other Thuringian towns and cities, the Jewish-Israeli Festival presents Israeli culture and society, Jewish life in Thuringia and Jewish history - with the help of music, theatre, films, exhibitions, lectures and workshops. A special attraction are puppet theatre for children, family days and dancing courses.

Time: October to November



Yiddish Summer in Weimar

Participants from all over the world discover old and new Yiddish culture together in Weimar. At in-depth workshops in Yiddish and with dance, song and klezmer music, they become immersed in the culture of Eastern European Jews. In the evenings, jam sessions, joint Sabbath evenings and concerts by prestigious performers celebrate "Yidishkayt".

Time: July and August

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